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Another name for the River Road Heritage Neighbourhood is The Mayors' Neighbourhood. This is because, after Niagara Falls became a city in 1904, the first eight mayors all lived along River Road, most of their homes overlooking the gorge. Most of these are still standing, some in better repair than others. Shown above, on River Road between Eastwood and Philip, is Clendening House, a Queen Anne Revival structure built in 1904 by newlyweds Charles and Nettie Clendening. Charles owned a planing mill, and bedecked his home with ornate woodwork inside and out. He was elected mayor in 1915, and guided the city for three years during World War I.

Scroll down for a map showing the locations of the first eight mayors' homes. First, however, have a look immediately below at the residence of the wealthiest of the early mayors, R. P. (Richard Peter) Slater. Called the Glenview Mansion or less reverently the Pink Palace, it was built in 1865. Slater, its third owner, bought it in 1893. He was a vigorous promoter of industrial development in Niagara Falls, especially in hydroelectric generation and silverware manufacturing. His home is actually a bit north of the River Road Neighbourhood, separated from it by the railyards near Bridge Street. The residential district surrounding his home is often called Slatertown or Silvertown.

Yet another mayor's home that has been faithfully restored is that of Charles C. Cole on Simcoe Street (below). Built in 1887, it was a bed and breakfast establishment when this photo was taken in 2015. Cole was mayor for two years, 1912 and 1913.

Finally, below is the map showing locations of all eight of the early mayors' homes. Other prominent residents — industrialists, barristers, magistrates, physicians — also chose to live in this neighbourhood. Then as now, the vista across the gorge held a certain allure, much as mountaintops and seashores do in other cities.

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